Summary: The Once-ler loses everything. Spoilers
Just like that, everything was gone.
His smog-spewing factory, his thneeds, his name, and the only real friends he'd ever had. All gone.
His money was meaningless; his company name was mud, and everything
everything he'd worked so hard to achieve
was nothing more than dust slipping through his gloved fingers now.
The Once-ler watched in stunned, and horrified silence as the Lorax lifted himself up, through a hole in the smog. A part of him remained incredulous, and he reached upward, vainly, in the smallest of attempts to call back the guardian of the forest. But the Lorax disappeared, and the sparkling, whispering glow that had taken him faded as well.
And now the Lorax was gone. Like everything else.
The silence was thickimpossibly so, with his Super-Axe-Hackers deactivated laid haphazardly across the rolling hills, the pumping of his factory gone, and the pipes that glumped the river were quieted. All was still. And it felt wrong.
He turned, slowly, and where the Lorax had stood, his shadow fell across the small structure made clumsily of rock, with one, only one, stone-cut word. No scolding, no badinage, and no words of reprimand. Just one, lone word"UNLESS."
And the Once-ler turned, again, slower than before, to face what remained of the valley that he had come to such a short time ago. And he was faced with the true horror of what he'd done.
Virtually everything was darkbleak, and grey, the only discernable colors being those of his machines, scattered across the land. The hundreds of thousands of stumps glared up at him, stark reminders of precisely what he had done. The land was dead, dry, and desolate. There were no Swomee-Swans soaring, no Humming- Fish humming, and no Bar-ba-loots playing in the shade of the Truffula trees. Everything was gonedead and gone.
"UNLESS indeed," he murmured softly.
With forced determination, the Once-ler turned on his heel, heading back towards his study, the setting sun playing against his back. His top hat slipped from his fingers as he walked, and he didn't bother to stop for it.
And only when he was seated behind his large desk again, facing the destruction he had caused, did the Once-ler's self-control deteriorate, and his face fell into his hands.
And he cried.